CrossFit Acronyms and Abbreviations #2

Defining CrossFit’s Lexicon
This page is meant to be informative and humorous. Many of you have probably wondered at some point just what all the terms and sayings in CrossFit mean. Others may not realize just why some workouts are named for women and others for men. Maybe you pick some of it up along the way, but to really get the most out of the CrossFit community sometimes it’s necessary to have the code we speak in explained outright. It can literally sound like a foreign language to the uninitiated. So, without further ado, what follows is a by no-means inclusive list of common CrossFit terms, phrases and sayings. We’ll expand this list periodically as the coaches realize there’s stuff we forgot.

AMRAP: As Many Rounds (sometimes reps) as Possible

BACON SIZZLE: When someone rolls around post-wod, unable to find a comfortable position because each one just has a different pain associated with it. Think lying in the fetal position, moving legs back and forth, rolling over, moaning constantly and you’ll get the idea.


BEAST: A complimentary term used to describe a badass athlete, as in “she’s a beast”.

BW (or BWT): Body weight

CROSSFITTER: An athlete who seeks real fitness, who possesses real determination and finishes what most people can never even start. A person who knows there is no gain without hard work. One who CrossFits.

CFT: CrossFit Total – consisting of max squat, press, and deadlift.

C&J: Clean and jerk

DFL: Dead Effing Last. Better than DNF (Did Not Finish), which is better than DNS (Did Not Start). We’ve all been DFL at some point. That’s where you grow. You learn nothing when you win all the time.

FIREBREATHER: A top- notch athlete, someone who does things that us mere mortals just stare at in wonderment. Someone we can all aspire to be like.

GIRL WORKOUTS: Named by CrossFit HQ, each one has become a staple that CrossFitters can use to compare themselves with others, as in “what’s your Fran time?” Like hurricanes, these wods can mess you up and that’s part of the reason they’re named. After a while you get to know the girls so well it’s easier to just say “today’s wod is Grace” rather than “30 clean and jerks for time”.

GLOBO GYM: The generic name given to all those gyms out there with a vast array of machines, mats, balance balls and trainers, none of which unfortunately do anything to make you more fit. Often associated with low membership prices, which proves the old saying “you get what you pay for”. A gym whose business strategy is designed to get you in the door, pay your fees and then hope you never come in again.

GOAT: A movement or lift that you just plain suck at. Something you dread coming up in a workout because you either suck at it, hate it or both. Common goats include double unders, muscle ups, running and handstand push ups. We all should be working on our goats, constantly.

GORILLA: Someone with ridiculous amounts of strength that allows them to muscle through workouts. Gorilla strength can often overcome flaws in technique that cripple lighter athletes. Conversely, gorillas often don’t meet their true potential because they never have to develop their technique to succeed. As odd as it sounds, not really a derogatory term.

GPP: General physical preparedness, aka “fitness.

HERO WODs: Again, named by CrossFit HQ, for heroes and fellow CrossFitters that have fallen in the line of duty. They are intentionally designed to be tough, almost impossibly so. Part of the challenge is to complete the workout and so honor a hero who has sacrificed so much more than just the sweat it takes to finish the workout. Each new hero workout that comes out is a bag of mixed emotions- sadness for yet another fallen hero, yet tinged with some excitement that there’s a new workout to honor our brothers (or sisters).

HUMILITY: Something every CrossFitter should possess. There is no athlete that cannot be brought to his knees by a workout. There is no perfection, only degrees of better. No matter what your achievements, you can also do more and should strive for that. See also pride.

HSPU: Hand stand push up. Kick up into a handstand (use wall for balance, if needed) bend arms until nose touches floor and push back up.

KB: Kettlebell

KTE: Knees to elbows. Similar to TTBs described below.

LUNG, CROSSFIT: A name for the hacking cough and lung-burning sensation one sometimes gets after a particularly hard workout. Coach Leon has no scientific reason for this, other than perhaps when you’re sucking wind constantly it probably dries out your airways and leaves you with the cough. An affliction worn with pride, as in “I totally have CrossFit Lung now”.

MET-CON: Metabolic Conditioning workout.

OHS: Overhead squat. Full-depth squat performed while arms are locked out in a wide grip press position above (and usually behind) the head.

Pd: Pood, weight measure for kettlebells

PR: Personal record.

PUKIE: Unofficial mascot of CrossFit, a clown that is depicted barfing after a particularly heinous wod. Most people will never meet Pukie and we certainly don’t want to push you to that point, but people have been known to meet him when in search of that new PR…

QUIT: Never heard of the word. Most CrossFitters soon forget its meaning. See also stop, give in, surrender and bitch out.

REST DAY: A necessary component for recovery, both physical and mental. The harder you work, the more rest you need. Embrace the rest days- you’ve earned them.

ROM: Range Of Motion. In CrossFit we constantly strive for full ROM, both for its physiologic benefit as well as because it gives us an objective standard to measure ourselves against. If you do 3 pull ups one day with full ROM and 5 the next without full ROM, can you truly say you’ve improved? Full ROM should not be considered optional.

ROWER: A medieval torture device used to utterly destroy a person and devastate their supposed cardiovascular conditioning. Reportedly enjoyed by two or three people on the planet.

REP: Repetition. One performance of an exercise.

Rx’d; as Rx’d: As prescribed; as written. WOD done without any adjustments.

SDHP: Sumo deadlift high pull.

SET: A number of repetitions. e.g., 3 sets of 10 reps, often seen as 3×10, means do 10 reps, rest, repeat, rest, repeat.

TTB: Toes to Bar.

WATER: A necessary component for life, but not for most workouts lasting less than 20 minutes. That’s right, you don’t need it. You’re just looking for an excuse to rest. Put it down and do the metcon. Of course, drink plenty of water throughout the REST of the day.

WO, sometimes W/O: Workout

WOD: Workout of the day